The Elephant Rope : Failure is part of learning

As a man was passing the elephants, he suddenly stopped, confused by the fact that these huge creatures were being held by only a small rope tied to their front leg. No chains, no cages. It was obvious that the elephants could, at anytime, break away from their bonds but for some reason, they did not.

He saw a trainer nearby and asked why these animals just stood there and made no attempt to get away. “Well,” trainer said, “when they are very young and much smaller we use the same size rope to tie them and, at that age, it’s enough to hold them. As they grow up, they are conditioned to believe they cannot break away. They believe the rope can still hold them, so they never try to break free.”

The man was amazed. These animals could at any time break free from their bonds but because they believed they couldn’t, they were stuck right where they were.

Like the elephants, how many of us go through life hanging onto a belief that we cannot do something, simply because we failed at it once before?

Failure is part of learning; we should never give up the struggle in life.

Author : Unknown

Lessons on Life

There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn to not judge things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away.

The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall.

When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen.

The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted.

The second son said no – it was covered with green buds and full of promise.

The third son disagreed, he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen.

The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfillment.

The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but one season in the tree’s life.

He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are – and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life – can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up.

If you give up when it’s winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall.

Don’t judge a life by one difficult season. Don’t let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.

Author : Unknown

A box full of kisses

Some time ago, a man punished his 3-year-old daughter for wasting a roll of gold wrapping paper. Money was tight and he became infuriated when the child tried to decorate a box to put under the Christmas tree.

Nevertheless, the little girl brought the gift to her father the next morning and said, “This is for you, Daddy.” He was embarrassed by his earlier overreaction, but his anger flared again when he found the box was empty.

He yelled at her, “Don’t you know that when you give someone a present, there’s supposed to be something inside it?”

The little girl looked up at him with tears in her eyes and said,”Oh, Daddy, it is not empty. I blew kisses into the box. All for you, Daddy.”

The father was crushed. He put his arms around his little girl, and he begged for her forgiveness.
It is told that the man kept that gold box by his bed for years and whenever he was discouraged, he would take out an imaginary kiss and remember the love of the child who had put it there.

In a very real sense, each of us as humans have been given a gold container filled with unconditional love and kisses from our children, friends, family and God. There is no more precious possession anyone could hold.

Author : Unknown

What goes around comes around

One day a man saw an old lady, stranded on the side of the road, but even in the dim light of day, he could see she needed help. So he pulled up in front of her Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still sputtering when he approached her.

Even with the smile on his face, she was worried. No one had stopped to help for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He didn’t look safe; he looked poor and hungry. He could see that she was frightened, standing out there in the cold. He knew how she felt. It was those chills which only fear can put in you. He said, “I’m here to help you, ma’am. Why don’t you wait in the car where it’s warm? By the way, my name is Bryan Anderson.”

Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady, that was bad enough. Bryan crawled under the car looking for a place to put the jack, skinning his knuckles a time or two. Soon he was able to change the tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands hurt.

As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down the window and began to talk to him. She told him that she was from St. Louis and was only just passing through. She couldn’t thank him enough for coming to her aid.

Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk. The lady asked how much she owed him. Any amount would have been all right with her. She already imagined all the awful things that could have happened had he not stopped. Bryan never thought twice about being paid. This was not a job to him. This was helping someone in need, and God knows there were plenty, who had given him a hand in the past. He had lived his whole life that way, and it never occurred to him to act any other way.

He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back, the next time she saw someone who needed help, she could give that person the assistance they needed, and Bryan added, “And think of me.”

He waited until she started her car and drove off. It had been a cold and depressing day, but he felt good as he headed for home, disappearing into the twilight.

A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe. She went in to grab a bite to eat, and take the chill off before she made the last leg of her trip home. It was a dingy looking restaurant. Outside were two old gas pumps. The whole scene was unfamiliar to her. The waitress came over and brought a clean towel to wipe her wet hair. She had a sweet smile, one that even being on her feet for the whole day couldn’t erase. The lady noticed the waitress was nearly eight months pregnant, but she never let the strain and aches change her attitude. The old lady wondered how someone who had so little could be so giving to a stranger. Then she remembered Bryan.

After the lady finished her meal, she paid with a hundred dollar bill. The waitress quickly went to get change for her hundred dollar bill, but the old lady had slipped right out the door. She was gone by the time the waitress came back. The waitress wondered where the lady could be. Then she noticed something written on the napkin.

There were tears in her eyes when she read what the lady wrote: “You don’t owe me anything. I have been there too. Somebody once helped me out, the way I’m helping you. If you really want to pay me back, here is what you do, do not let this chain of love end with you.” Under the napkin were four more $100 bills.

Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill, and people to serve, but the waitress made it through another day. That night when she got home from work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about the money and what the lady had written. How could the lady have known how much she and her husband needed it? With the baby due next month, it was going to be hard… She knew how worried her husband was, and as he lay sleeping next to her, she gave him a soft kiss and whispered soft and low, “Everything’s going to be all right. I love you, Bryan Anderson.”

There is an old saying “What goes around comes around.”

Author: Unknown

The Importance of Having Friends

Once upon a time, a lonely hawk lived on a tree by the riverside. He was young and handsome but he had no friends.

One day, he saw a beautiful she-hawk sitting on a tree and wanted to marry her but the she-hawk refused to marry him, as he had no friends.

“Will you marry me if I make three friends?” – he asked. She said that she definitely would.

The hawk then went looking for friends. While flying on the other bank of the river, he saw a huge tortoise. The hawk flew down to him and said, “Dear tortoise, will you be my friend and help me in my hour of need?” The tortoise agreed to become his friend and said, “Call me whenever you need me and I shall come to your side.”

The hawk also promised him his help at any time and then flew in search of the second friend. Soon, he came upon an osprey. The hawk went to it and asked her if she would be his friend and help him in time of his need. The osprey very gladly accepted his friendship and offered her help whenever he needed it.

The hawk was glad that he had made two friends.

He went on searching for a third friend. He flew over the jungle and saw a tiger. Fearless as he was, he went near the tiger and requested him to be his friend. The tiger readily accepted his friendship and said, “From now onwards, I am your friend. Nobody will harm you. If anyone tries to harm you, call me and I will be there to help you.”

The hawk was very happy. He thanked the tiger, flew back to the she-hawk and said, “I have made three friends, a tortoise, an osprey and a tiger. Will you marry me now?”

The she-hawk agreed to marry him. Soon, their marriage took place. The three friends attended the hawk’s marriage.

After some-months, she-hawk gave birth to two baby hawks. The parent hawks were very happy to have cute little babies. They lived happily in their nest.

One day, two hunters came and sat under that tree. They were tired and hungry. They had not been able to hunt any animal. They decided to catch some fish. But, they couldn’t catch even a single fish.

It was getting dark and the hunters decided to spend the night under that tree. To keep themselves warm, they lit a fire. The fire soared high. The hawk-babies on the tree could not bear the heat and the smoke coming out of the fire. They started crying. The Hunters heard their cries.

One of them said, ”There are birds on this tree. Let us catch them. We shall roast them on the fire and eat them.” The other one agreed.

The hawks heard them and were really worried about the safety of their babies. The she-hawk suggested that they seek help from their friends. The hawk went to the osprey and told her his problem. The osprey said, “Go home and protect your babies. I shall tackle with the hunters.”

The osprey dived into the river and then flew over the fire. The water from her wet feathers fell on the fire. She repeatedly dived into the river and flew over the fire. The water from her feathers put off the fire.

The hunters decided to light the fire again; however, as soon as they lit the fire, again the osprey put it off.

In the meantime, the hawk went to get help from the tortoise. When the tortoise heard about the hawk’s problem, he said to him, “Do not worry dear friend, I will be there in no time and tackle the hunters in my own way. Go and protect your family.”

The hawk flew to the tree and the tortoise reached the tree. He went quite close to where the hunters were sitting and trying to light the fire again. The hunters saw the tortoise and one of them said, “Look there is a huge tortoise. Let’s forget about the hawks and catch this tortoise.”

The other hunter agreed and said, “Let’s tear our shirts and make a rope. We shall tie its one end to the tortoise and other to our waists. Then we will pull the tortoise with all our strength.” The other hunter liked the idea. Soon, they make a rope out of their shirts. They tied one end of the rope to the tortoise’s legs. Then, trying the other end to their waist, they could not pull the tortoise. The tortoise’s strength was much greater than the two hunters were together.

The tortoise pulled the two men into the water. Once, inside the water, it was very easy for the tortoise to drag them. With great efforts, they cut the rope that was tied to their waist and swam back to the bank. They were now feeling very cold. They had lost their shirts. They thought of making a fire again.

Seeing them collecting leaves and twigs, the hawk was worried again. He flew to the forest and called his third friend, the tiger. He found the tiger at the edge of the forest. When the tiger heard the hawk’s problem, he immediately rushed towards the riverbank.

The hunter had now lit the fire and one of them was preparing to climb the tree to get the hawk babies. Just then, the tiger reached the tree. Seeing the tiger, the hunters ran from there and never came back again.

The hawk thanked all his three friends for their kind and timely help. He also realized that it is very important to have at least a few friends. The female-hawk was very wise in advising the hawk to make friends before marrying him.

Author : Unknown